T-Pain Acoustic Session at NPR HQ’s Studio 1

November 2015
T-Pain Acoustic Session

T-Pain performing at NPR’s Studio 1 on November 19, 2015. Source: Nick Michael/NPR

November 2015

No dreads. No auto-tune. What’s next? A tie made out of metallic hexagons? Regardless of changes to his aesthetic and audio-filters, T-Pain continues to make amazing music.

Last week, the T-Pain acoustic session awed fans in NPR’s packed Studio 1. The singer debuted a song off of his upcoming album, Stoicville: The Phoenix, and performed old hits and covers at NPR’s Studio 1 in Washington, DC.

The performance marked the one year anniversary of T-Pain’s Tiny Desk Concert with NPR Music, which stands as the most popular Tiny Desk Concert to date. The 2014 performance marked a pivotal shift in T-Pain’s career – it was the first time the world was exposed to his music without its trademark auto-tuned sound.

[His rendition of “A Change is Gonna Come”] was a logical extension of T-Pain’s memorable Tiny Desk Concert—the most viewed episode ever—during which many listeners first realized that this man can really sing. Gone was the autotune that made him a platinum selling artist and the subject of critical ridicule in the mid-Aughts.


T-Pain performing at a Tiny Desk Concert in 2014


The T-Pain acoustic session proves to be just as successful as last year’s Tiny Desk Concert, as initial reviews establish it as a performance for the ages:


For a half a century now, soul music has provided a platform for human beings to perform their vulnerability. This was a man performing through his.

-The Washington Post

After last night, we’re gonna need a T-Pain covers album of all our favorite Motown classics, stat.

-USA Today

Social media was also tuned into the live stream from Studio 1:


Frannie Kelley, host of Microphone Check, organized the surprise concert that sold out in less than one minute. Microphone Check is turning the tables on the perceptions of hip-hop by providing a platform for artists to express their feelings on a variety of topics, including social issues and creative methods.

The success of the T-Pain performances are a testament to NPR’s rising status on the Hip-Hop and R&B scene. NPR Music’s Microphone Check will continue to gather the genre’s biggest stars on a 10-city tour that will put the most prominent rappers on a panel in front of their respective hometowns.


Watch the T-Pain Acoustic Session in Studio 1 here:



Don’t miss out on the opportunity to align your brand with NPR’s momentous surge in the hip-hop community. Take a look at the Microphone Check program page for the opportunity to sponsor the Microphone Check Tour.


Check out some of the latest episodes of Microphone Check with Ali Shaheed Mohammed and Frannie Kelley: